19 posts • joined Wednesday 6th February 2008 15:33 GMT
Not as local as I hoped
Seems good in principle and nice to have as an option. However I'm slightly surprised by how far my local Collect+ points are. I really hope it works and they end up with more outlets because my employers aren't keen on me getting parcels there and I live in the kind of apartment that is utterly impenetrable when it comes to deliveries :(
Skype cuts off nose?
AC: "Not quite sure what Skypes business plan is apart from to prevent as many of its users from using their service as possible."
Yep. I used to SkypeOut (i.e. paid for) using the Nimbuzz client. I'm not exactly going to top up my Skype account once the money runs out.
Why the swipe at psychology?
Why end an article about media representation of climate change with a swipe at psychology and business studies?
If you want to know *why* different media outlets are presenting 'the science' differently then some kind of social scientist might actually be the right person to ask.
The Na'vi have a horrible time...
Pandora looked very pretty, so I understand why it might seem superficially appealing compared with the more mundane aspects of real life. But the Na'vi have a horrible time what with getting killed and having their special tree burnt down.
Floating mountains aside, we already live on a pretty cool planet. If what you learn from this badly scripted film is that you don't terribly like your life then do something about it. Not wishing to trivialise depression, but retreating into a fantasy world is only going to widen the gap between your life as you want to lead it and how you actually lead it. I'd try and focus on nice things that actually do exist on this planet.
Regular VM outages made me buy 3g
I don't know the annual rate of VM internet outages in my area, but enough of them are sufficiently inconvenient that I bought a 3g dongle as a (slow) backup.
What surprised me more was when my elderly parents lost their VM telephone line for around 24hrs. I think that was about the third time this year. They aren't very good with their mobile phone so I'm not confident they'd have been able to make a call if there were an emergency. (Given my father had a heart attack a month ago, it isn't a particularly far-fetched scenario.)
The VM status page doesn't seem particularly useful. Firstly some of their geographical areas are ambiguous and don't obviously map onto reality as I know it. Secondly it doesn't always seem to be updated, which must mean they have to handle more enquiries. If it said "Telephone outage in Town X, should be fixed by 5pm" I wouldn't have spent an hour trying to call them from my mobile.
Better linuxes, but poorer high street availability?
I bought one of the original linux Acer Aspire Ones with from PC World. Getting a linux version was easy, but Linpus on the Acer was horrible. Even as a linux fanboi I just couldn't get on with it. Ubuntu NBR was a massive improvement.
I couldn't find any linux netbooks on the PC World website this morning. Anyone know which, if any, high street retailers offer linux netbooks? Seems a shame if just as we have better linuxes for netbooks, they vanish from the shops.
@ h 6
"I ended up spending most of my after school 300 baud online time at the local BBSs. For free. Fidonet anyone?"
Yeah, I was a fido sysop (2:440/308 IIRC). The nice thing was your local BBS could pre-process and compress (ARC, LZH, ZIP whatever...) your mail so you'd make maximum use of your online time. That was great for the UK where we paid BT by the minute (albeit only local rates).
I know everyone is laughing at the idea of kebabs being labelled, but manufacturers do actually label the kebab meat. That's how the kebab house knows what type of meat it is. So if the labels don't reflect the contents then you potentially end up with Muslims inadvertently eating/handling pork or non-halal meat.
They got greedy
I had an ebay shop which helped finance my PhD. Ebay's customer service was never good, but as time went by they eroded profit margins so badly that it ultimately became uneconomic for me and many other sellers. Time and time again they'd tell us fees were being reduced, but when you read the small print it only applied in incredibly limited circumstances. On a £5 sale I could end up paying them nearly £1.50 after listing fees, shop fees, selling fees and paypal fees.
It is sad really because some sellers were very good and there was, in the early days, a tremendous sense of good-will.
Is this a FOSS image problem?
Putting Karen aside, isn't the real story that FOSS is unfamiliar to many/most computer users?
For example I gave a colleague an Ubuntu CD to try out but they changed their minds after a helpful friend warned them that it must be pirated and full of viruses. Free (as in beer) arouses suspicion and free (as in speech) isn't commonly understood. Meanwhile malware and counterfeit or stolen software are quite familiar ideas.
I'm more worried about the NEXT emperor
Looking ahead the problem may be that the IWF eventually gets replaced or significantly reshaped - now that could be a good thing, but it could also be very bad. Given the current moral panic and stories like this...
...(admittedly in Australia not the UK, but part of the same hysteria) how confident do we feel that there won't be a knee jerk reaction and the introduction of more restrictive practices?
When I bought my linux AA1 from DSG they tried very hard to sell me Windows anti-virus software.
I can envisage the UK government attempting something similarly draconian, and they will get support for it on the basis of protecting children.
We don't normally do feminist gender theory on The Reg ;-) but it brings to mind Angela McRobbie's description of moral panic 'instill[ing] fear in people and [...] encouraging them to turn away from complexity [...] to adopt a gung-ho “something must be done about it” attitude’. In the midst of a moral panic rational discussion becomes impossible, and anyone querying censorship can be beaten over the head for supporting child pornography, terrorism or whatever.
We aren't a police state and saying that we are seriously underestimates what real oppression is. HOWEVER, there is something incredibly wrong with a supposedly liberal democracy introducing such sweeping powers of surveillance. Furthermore the government has profoundly misunderstood its relationship with the people - we control them, not the other way around. If there is probable cause to suspect a serious crime then, yes, by all means bring out the wiretaps and MI5 - but leave everyone else the hell alone.
I used to believe in the New Labour project. There was a point in time where, in contrast with Thatcherism, it seemed possible for a government to give a shit about people (e.g. minimum wage, equality legislation, civil partnerships, more money for NHS...). But it is hard to remember the good stuff compared with the avalanche of execrable bat shit crazy control freak reactionary bollocks. It's like someone read Foucault and decided to have a real panopticon, not just in a prison but actually out there monitoring all of us. Gah... I need a drink!
I run an Ebay business and agree there is a legitimate concern about sellers giving retaliatory -ve feedback. However buyer feedback is going to be meaningless under this new system. Why not simply give sellers access to relatively objective stats like the number of purchases made and the number of non-payment strikes against the seller?
IMHO the bigger story about the price changes has been obscured. There will be reductions for powersellers who get good feedback, unfortunately this is counterbalanced by a fee increase for non-powersellers no matter how good their feedback.